RIP Penspinning?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Sebastiandoingthings, Apr 17, 2016.

  1. i.suk

    i.suk eternal fl


    hmm, i don't think we've hit the limits of new stuff at all, it's more there being a lack of people who aim at doing new stuff, because most spinners are simply copying existing material (most of them don't even bother with simple forms of variation) - for example, 2p1h is hardly explored, there's probably unspeakable amount of material/concepts that can be performed with it

    it's not like power is exhausted either, everyone knows that mix and match of fl around variations + topspin variation will let you generate dozens of power trick/fl variations - it's just that...well, no one bothers doing them for some reason (and it's not purely because of difficulty, it's that PS community as a whole prefers strongly to do existing material rather than branch off, it's always been like this - and it's those few people who break this trend like f2f, RPD and others, or someone who decides to reach outside limit of what is considered 'doable' like peem - these guys create the 'new era', and it's because of lack of people like this rather than actual 'lack of material' in PS, so i don't really agree with what s777 said)

    the reason f2f's material is largely unknown is more from people simply going 'wtf it's impossible' and deciding to learn from more conventional material, yes - f2f is definitely exceptional and his mind works different to everyone else, and he's been working with that element of 'genius' of systematically being able to modify and combine things in weird ways for long time, if someone worked at copying his stuff before he got as 'weird' and trained over long time, i don't see how he could be impossible to match or even surpass (e.g. MG guy from TWPS can copy fair bit of f2f's twirls - of course, he doesn't have the pure creativity f2f had to make new material, but it shows that copying f2f's material is hardly impossible)

    afaik most WT/WC competitors just combined linkages they had at the time (that they didn't reveal in previous videos much), they didn't spend 2-3 weeks deriving entirely different concepts that hadn't been done by anyone before; from appearance of tournament combos and comparing them to spinners' previous material, most of time there is enormous overlap or logical progression, and often significant recycling after R3 or so - doesn't seem like weeks of dedicated tournament planning to me - this is why i consider f2f's combo planning different, f2f also surely spent far longer time deriving new material/making deliberate variations of things than the usual 'good spinner' who just copies difficult things and changes fingerslots/trick order and whatnot

    "Dreaming of things and having a vision does not make them happen, i.suk, that's just rhetoric, if it is not practice, dedication, technique, genetics, research, experimentation, then there's nothing left than something that sounds vaguely poetic." --> it's from enjoying spinning a lot makes practice enjoyable, makes dedication not requiring mentally forcing yourself to spin, it's from having a vision that you practice new/difficult things to push yourself - of course, practice and dedication definitely required, but enjoyment and vision makes what seems stressful and annoying into something you love doing, which for me makes it far, far, far easier to do ^^

    experimentation is natural part of learning, research is just using available material, technique is just product of experimentation, disadvantage from not hitting genetic or lucky cont technique lottery is overwhelmed by experimentation and practice --> in the end, it's still very same things we determined before, lol

    "For every person that ever really wanted to spin power tricks as good as peem, or you who succeeded, there are dozens who didn't come close, who wanted it just as bad." --> the reason they didn't get anywhere close is from not enjoying practice enough, because training felt more like a chore than something for fun - until they've exhausted reasonable avenues of improvement and dedication, using 'i lost because of unchangeable factors' is merely an excuse - although perhaps you've already reached this point, which is why you made above reasoning

    well, peem and f2f era are different stages in PS, sure - but the main similarity is the enormous gap they held over everyone else in the time they spun actively - the gap with peem and world has closed and f2f and world has not, so it's your idea of 'f2f was just that exceptional' and my idea of 'not enough people bothered pursuing f2f' that are competing - and we'll never really know answer to this (IMO, anyway)

    "Yeah, there are people that learn faster than you do, but they're either doing better than you or they quit early on instead of keeping up the progression, it doesn't mean in any way you're not hugely faster at picking up tricks than advanced spinners." --> they quit because they didn't enjoy PS enough, other guys doing better because they practiced or focused on different aspects etc, it doesn't affect my thinking or enjoyment; and....i think you didn't read earlier posts where i outlined my cont progress of palmspin and bust in my first 3 years, i'm not hugely faster at picking up tricks, it's just a mental trap that people put themselves in to comfort themselves that 'good spinners are inherently better and i can't do anything about it' (which, has some element of truth for you who did practice a lot, but for many people who did not practice as much as you, is probably not core or only reason contributing)
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2016
    Lucan, Inev and kuro like this.
  2. snoopy1218

    snoopy1218 New Member

    In my opinion, there are a number of things that caused pen spinning to dwindle off.

    1.) Today's "youth" (middle school is when I started pen-spinning, so I'll use that as a reference) spend more time online and live in a less tangible world than I did, and so spend more time on social media than actually doing stuff with their hands and bodies. Pen spinning was a fun way for me to pass the time, and I guess today's kids would rather snapchat their friends than find a physical hobby. In addition, video games and electronic entertainment have grown exponentially in development and let's face it, if I were a kid, I'd rather be playing CoD Zombies in 1080p than spinning stationery.

    2.) The learning curve for pen-spinning is admittedly harder to deal with than other activities, such as bike-riding, playing an instrument, and (god knows) video games. I remember getting frustrated very often when I was just starting out, and trying to learn busts and baks without fundamentals, and even after finding upsb, I still struggled. The youth of today have less patience, and focus on instant gratification, so I can see the learning curve as something to discourage the newcomers.

    3.) Material cost and availability. When a KT costs around $25, there will be lots of holdouts just because money is already a roadblock (lord knows I was stingy as hell, and basically bummed mods off of everybody I knew). Also, more and more parts are becoming discontinued (Art Colors, Hyperjells, etc etc), and so the selection of the older mods start to disappear.

    In the end, I find pen spinning to be very rewarding, because I've put in the time. I can basically do it anywhere, and with ease; I don't forget the tricks, and it's always great to impress your teachers and professors for that initial 9 seconds, and then they sigh because they realize you do poorly in their class because you spend too much time fumbling around with pens and markers.
    Janne, Feuersturm, flow and 2 others like this.
  3. Feuersturm

    Feuersturm Time's Person of the Year, 2006

    I agree with all of this. As a new penspinner, idle time that I spent on my phone I now spin a lot.

    The learning curve is insane. I spent a lot of time playing Dota 2, and trying to get friends into that is hard, because it's hard to learn basics (tons of information), or they play an (arguably) easier to pick up game like LoL. I've showed a friend or two the thumb-around, but initial dis-coordination and lack of fluidity with even just a sonic puts them off. I get frustrated, but I keep practicing because it's something I very much want to learn. Desire to learn needs to be very high to learn and push past the fundamentals of penspinning.

    Materials are definitely a contributing factor. With games, nowadays you just download them. Much easier hobby to pick up. It's very hard to "fall into" penspinning, like you can casually playing a game. Compare this to penspinning, where a lot of pens/pencils don't work well at all. Mods make some tricks easier, but public knowledge of pen modding is very low - usually someone needs to have shown them at some point. A fresh beginner would probably give up earlier with an unmodded pen, because it's undeniably harder to learn. A BICtory or unmoddded RSVP is far easier to spin than an unmodded standard pen. Also, in some places, many mods are difficult, if not impossible, to find parts for.

    "Reward" from penspinning seems to be a big topic in this discussion. Some people like things that are easier. For example, watching movies is a hobby. It's rewarding in the sense that, generally, movies are entertaining to watch. It's easy to pick up - you literally just watch movies. It's easy.

    However, some people relish a challenge. it's just that simple. Not everyone wants a hobby that's difficult to pick up, but there are some that embrace difficult things. I would say that penspinning is rewarding, as much so as any other hobby that doesn't really produce anything (for-fun hobbies?).

    How can we make penspinning more popular?
    This is a difficult question, and there's many ways we can't make penspinning popular. We can't get people away from their phones and the instant gratification of many hobbies. We can't make people that don't like a challenge embrace something that can be unintuitive.

    One solution I can think of is making pen mods more accessible. Personally, the BICtory is awesome. Almost all the components were laying around my house somewhere. The pens I didn't have, I ran to Walmart to get. Without my BICtory, I would be stuck with my unmodded RSVP, which is usable but more difficult to learn tricks on. Many popular mods like the waterfall or any comssa mods are impossible for me to source the parts for locally, as I live in the U.S.

    Making newer mods using newer pens (sourced from common stores/chains) would possibly increase popularity of spinning.

    The other solution I can think of is to lower the initial difficulty of spinning. There's only 3 places I really know of for penspinning - YouTube, /r/penspinning, and UPSB. Searching "penspinning tutorial" on YouTube yields many old videos in SD, and many videos that are of non-fundamental tricks. YouTube is probably the biggest site that people would look for penspinning tutorials on, besides Google, and these aren't good search results for a beginner. The subreddit is fairly easy to find, but the FAQ could go more in depth. UPSB is the least common site for people to stumble across, and there's no huge links to beginner penspinners/progression guides.

    Making a well written text guide for beginners is a necessity. It must be easy to find. There definitely needs to be obvious and apparent links to it on the forums. Maybe a new video or two that give a general introduction to penspinning, and walk through the text beginners guide.

    I think that the text guide post would need to include sections about:
    • Pens, and which unmodded ones are best (MUST be commonly available, like the RSVP).
    • Modding pens, and easy mods to make (that can be sourced easily and locally - BICtory, etc.); Also, popular mods that are hard to make (waterfall, etc.)
    • Learning order! THIS IS HUGE! Tell people what they should do to become good. Shadow's learning order would be an excellent candidate here. Explain why the order is recommended, but note that it is possible to skip ahead, with worse results (some people will always want to do this, I think). Also, link to new, nice-looking, well-presented videos if possible (definitely for the fundamentals. Can't be avoided for some tricks, unless new videos are produced)
    • How much to practice/how to practice. Don't tell people just to spin a pen. Tell them which method of practice is the best.
    • Popular videos. Show what people could (eventually) accomplish with all of this! Practicing fundamentals can be boring, and the tricks are short and kind of plain, but smooth combinations look awesome!
    • Penspinning notation. Less important for beginners, because they won't be jumping into difficult combos, but at least an introduction that would be good for fingerslots and transitions between them.
    Note that the comprehensive beginner's guide should probably include more, I'm just writing this as I think of it.

    Sorry that this post is probably badly written, just kind of braindumping. As a newer spinner, I really don't want this hobby to die.
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2016
    Lucan, Security, Quimoxx and 7 others like this.
  4. freezR

    freezR Member

    We could also ask youtubers/instagrammers etc. to make videos about ps just like kuma films
  5. Security

    Security Irresponsible Security Guard

    This thread is my explanation to people when I say that psing is dying out.
    I like the idea of spreading the word, ESPECIALLY about mods.
    People ask me to make them a KT/Buster equivalent, and since I still have the mentality of "buster/it early on will ruin your spinning" I direct them towards simpler mods such as the XMGX, which two classmates have made themselves.
    Most people don't pick it up, I think, because they are intimidated. Most people I talk to say "I can't do anything" (in relation to spinning) and thus never pick it up, because they don't think they can do it.
    I know a few who can do it, and I've tried to get them to join UPSB, and further their spinning.
    It makes me sad to see members go, but we all have commitments to make, be it school, a job, family, or a relationship, pen spinning interferes with most if not all of it.
    One reason why I am disliked at my school (aside from the obvious) is that pen spinning makes up for most of what I talk about, and nobody wants to hear that.
    I get obsessed with things, and pen spinning is one that has stuck with me for longer than most "phases" I've been through. It's likely that I'll be at it for a while, to make it worth all of the time, money, and effort I've put into this.
    tl;dr of my rant
    People leave the boards because they cannot juggle this and whatever they have going on at the same time, and choose their irl lives over this.
    Feuersturm likes this.
  6. TheSilverWing

    TheSilverWing New Member

    This is sadly true, pen spinning is dead. I don't really do much pen spinning, I usually customize pens because it's fun and amazing to look at. I do pen spinning alot in school because it's boring.
    moss likes this.
  7. Æva

    Æva Gourmet

    yes yes, pen spinning is dead
    popte and moss like this.
  8. Kuyarei

    Kuyarei New Member

    It's an unfortunate thing. Especially since i joined at the end of 2015, after all the action had long been over. Spinners have majorly dropped from some years ago. The main issue i see present is that it seems that the current spinners are just too high-leveled to even compete with. And especially that some top spinners seemed to stop spinning actively in the end.
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2017


    Wait then doesn't it make us more unique?
  10. Security

    Security Irresponsible Security Guard

    In everyone's eyes, they're unique.
    Yes, our hobby is odd, and uncommon, but we're not incredibly unique.
    Most YT channels that are featured are either monetinized, "trendy", or both, hence why most PS channels, while popular by our standards, it's unlikely that they'll reach the amount of likes/subs/views as bigger channels do, because it's so uncommon.
    Sure, you have some "pen spin trick" videos on some non ps related channels, but those aren't the best IMO, and aren't NEARLY as popular as other channels.
    The most popular channel I can think of where some spinners pick up spinning is KumaFilms, which might be monetinized, and is fairly professional, but it has nothing to do with what is currently popular. If I go on YouTube, log out, and go to the homepage, I don't see anything even remotely ps related. It's all funny vines, football/soccer, American football, and music videos from popular pop artists. It's uncommon, and not the kind of uncommon that is generally accepted to the point where it's called "weird" but it really isn't. PS is such a strange thing in my school, although some students can do some of the fundamentals.
    Now the weirdest thing people do in my school is watch anime, which is very common on this board, and in other parts of the world. I see PS as one aspect of a foreign country that never really took root, either here in the US, or in other places. I'm not saying it hasn't, but many beginners in the US last for a grand total of maybe two weeks.
    moss likes this.
  11. i.suk

    i.suk eternal fl

    Yeah, attention to PS (in viewcount) definitely lower - old WT/WC and solo vids (e.g. peem WC10 finals, supawit 3 and 4 year solo, s777's solos) - a lot of these vids spinners have 30k, 50k even 100k+ or 200k+ views. This is far more than menowa's vids (which are by far the most popular out of WT15 combos, each one has 10-15k views - whereas good WT15 combos from other guys have 2-3k views only, sometimes not even that).

    Basically every good spinner keeps spinning, but usually they don't actively practise/try to improve (or film that much), so it feels like they vanish even when they keep spinning or watching PS vids occasionally.

    However, technical skill level is now ridiculously high with all the resources and learning material available. For example, <-- this guy has spun a year (yes, shocking); and a certain spinner I met in HK can do 29 adv ss cont and 14 fl ma ring ss cont at 1 year 9 months (it took me a full year of nearly grinding to get to 10, and that was in 2015 after I'd already spun 7 years). Of course, these 2 guys are exceptions even among 'prodigies', so no one should feel bad about themselves.

    While top spinners seem too distant in skill to beat, it's felt that way as a beginner for a long time, whether you start in 2009 (seeing s777's, supawit's 2, 3, and 4 year solos), or if you started in 2011-2013 (sutomo spun 2 years when he won WT13, f2f's fpsbt 2011 combo and WC12 combos were when he'd spun under 3 years). Of course, main aim of PS is to enjoy it, but human mind can't help but compare against those legends or prodigies.

    Those amazingly skilled 'crazy' people will always seem too distant to surpass. However, if you enjoy and improve gradually without despairing over how much 'better' others are, after a while - you could be one of those who others look up to (not just for PS, but in academics, in your job/profession and other aspects of life).
    moss likes this.

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